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Friday, April 27, 2007

I am moving

According to

Bloggers can use their own domain names without losing all the page rank their blogspot blog had gained over time. Google has states that your blogger blog page rank and search engine status will be maintained if you’re using a custom domain. This now avoids the duplicate content penalty that is often observed if you try to simply redirect a Blogger blog using a meta redirect.

So I am moving to my custom domain. Right now. Yay! Wish me luck.

Sleepless nights are here again

Nights have been difficult for the past three days. I haven't been able to sleep for more than two hours and I feel like I'm gong to crash anytime soon. I felt my lower lip twitching yesterday morning and it scared me a little because I can't do anything to make it stop. I am still breastfeeding the little one (yes, at 19 months) and she has this habit of looking for my breast in the middle of the night. I know breastfeeding hormones are supposed to make me relax but all I can think about is how many minutes more before I can remove Sandy's mouth. She also loves to pinch my other nipple to help her sleep so you can just imagine why I can't just relax and enjoy the closeness just like what the baby books tell us. If she's not sleep-feeding, she's rolling on the bed or sitting up, trying to find a comfortable position.

I had a taste of heaven this morning though when my wonderful husband massaged my feet. I just love the guy. I fell asleep instantly, recharging myself for at least one more hour until the little girl wakes up and look for her dede again.

Sandy hates her poop. How weird is that? The first time she saw it, she almost puked and I laughed really hard. I mean, we don't tell her it's yucky. In fact, we always clap our hands whenever she does number 2. What happened the next day wasn't funny though. She was eating when she suddenly had the urge to poop. When she saw her poop on the floor, she threw up her lunch. My poor baby. Sherwin said her ninang and lola from Tondo are like that as well. It's hereditary. Weird yes, but interesting LOL.

Perhaps you're wondering why her poop was on the floor. For the past 2 months, she has been wearing panties, not diapers during daytime. Other than the obvious reason of cost cutting and saving the environment, we get to see how she acts before she pees enabling us to pick up cues. We also bought her a cheap potty trainer but being OC like her Papa, she doesn't want to see it dirty or wet so she just uses it for playtime. If she's in the mood, she says "mama wiwi" giving me enough time to carry her to the bathtub where she pees. There are also moments when you're carrying her and all of a sudden she will wiggle violently wanting to be put down. I found out that she just wants to pee and doesn't want to wet whoever it is that's carrying her. Amazing!

Sandy’s yaya, Ate Shel is leaving us. I feel really sad because Sandy has grown to love her and she's very patient with Sandy's tantrums. We have tried to offer her an increase but she'd rather go home to her little girl so we really don't see any reason why we should convince her to stay. I just hope we can find a replacement for her soon and that she will take care of our little one as if she's her own child.

Other factors why I couldn't sleep are:
- "day-dreaming" about our house
- wondering where I can find time to scrap Sandy’s baby photos
- thinking about the web designs that I have to make
- thinking about the designs I have made and if the clients liked them
- thinking about our future here in the Philippines (what with manny pacquiao, richard gomez and cesar montano running for office)

Monday, April 23, 2007

Oh yeah!

Just finished designing four web site mockups today. Whew! I'm officially done with my work. I hope the clients will like them. Coming up with new designs is so tiring and frustrating especially when my creative juices have all dried up. Not that I'm complaining. I love my job very much! It's just that a little break won't hurt. Whenever I check my mails in the morning, one thing that I always hope to see is a message from the client approving my designs. It means I can start converting the layout which will usually take 2-3 hours leaving me enough free time to play. And when I say play, I mean browse, scrap or and read my daily chismis through blog hopping.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Sideline anyone?

If you're very good at getting traffic to blogs, please leave me a message. A client of mine is looking to improve his blog's traffic and willing to pay.

Please email me your rates :) Go ladies, pang-bili din ng kits to hehe.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Affordable vacation packages

Online hotel reservations are always a blessing for me. Whenever we need to go on a trip, I always have a list of travel agencies who can offer me the best package. I came across HotelReservations while searching for bed and breakfast. If you're from the US, give a try. They have over 1370 destinations from hotels, motels, bed and breakfast, condo rentals, beach resorts and more. Just like what they say on their web site, there is something for everyone. You can even customize your travel arrangements whether you would like one to two destinations or if you prefer a flight bundled with hotel accommodations and car transfers. The hotel listings are very detailed. Each hotel is rated with stars based on the level of accommodations and services that they offer, a map and currency converter, interior and exterior photo gallery, list of amenities and expert tips on activities that you can do.

They also have a destination guide for your travel research so you can properly plan your trip. Just click on any country and you will learn almost about anything from maps, entry requirements, where to eat and stay, their public holidays, culture and even crime and safety. This will help you prepare your itinerary making your vacation stress-free.

And the best part is that guarantees the lowest hotel rates. The number of reservations that they're getting is huge which allows them to negotiate with the properties that they offer. They have a Special Internet Rate Price Guarantee to prove that they do have the lowest rate. If you have already booked a prepaid reservation with them and you found a lower rate with the same hotel and same date, they will match the lower rate or let you cancel your booking without any fee. You can save up to 70% off by booking online or make your reservation over the phone. The site is very user friendly and you can even view it in your language and currency.

Monday, April 16, 2007

Papa "wook"!

Sherwin and I have this unspoken agreement that if one of use wants to have "me" time, the other one should play or watch the little girl even if there's a yaya around.

Last Friday was my turn. I was watching Heroes season 1 so he played with Sandy outside. He came back with these pictures.

The little girl looked like she was having fun with her Papa. I asked how he got her to pose when we couldn't even get a decent shot of her because of her kakulitan. He said Sandy knew that he was taking her pictures and she cooperated by doing a lot of poses on her own.

Useful Tips for Maintaining your Blog's Audience

Blogging has been around since the beginning of the Internet. I've owned several blogs for the past five years but I always end up discarding them. It's either I want to start a new one with a different style or I just don't have the time to update it. The latest and so far, the longest blog I've ever maintained is My Happy Place. This blog is mostly about my little girl plus bits and pieces about my work, hobbies and personal thoughts. I also found my audience, working or stay-at-home moms; newlyweds and scrapbook addicts that I have very much in common with. We all love reading each other's stories and the comments and visits are endless. Another reason why I am trying to be diligent in my posting is because I have found a way to earn while blogging. My earnings are not that big YET. In fact, most of my bids get declined but I'm not discouraged. The main purpose of my blog is to share my stories and if I earn while doing it, the better!

Sponsoredreviews is one of the companies that pay bloggers to review services and products from different advertisers. Here is where I get most of my offers and they pay instantly once you finish your task. They reposted an old article on how to build and maintain your blog audience. I've read it a couple of times and found a lot of useful tips that will help me build traffic for my blog. For those of you who want to attract more readers, please read 27+1 Tips for Building and Maintaining a Blog Audience. They discussed the fundamentals on how to make your blog interesting. It should be original and not just a clone of some popular blog. The design should also be kept in mind. No one wants to read through a black background with gray text or something horribly bright like fiery red or a hot pink text over a purple background.

As for building your audience, it is very important that you find time to update your blog. If you blog almost everyday or even a couple of days a week, your audience will most likely visit your site for updated information thus increasing your site's traffic. Of course, your blog should have interesting topics to begin with. Let your readers tell you what they think by enabling your comments feature and make sure that you double check your spellings and grammar. Keep people informed by sharing the latest tools or cool articles that you have discovered. This will surely keep your readers come back for more.

More tips can be seen here.

Last Saturday

Saturday was Sandy's schedule for typhoid vaccine at the UST hospital. She's always excited to go to her pedia, Lola Beck, because of the kids roaming the hallways and the toys and books that are scattered around her office. She will chat with all the babies and do all her tricks while we wait for her turn. Even if she cries after every shot, she still kisses her Lola Beck goodbye. The last shot I think was a bit painful for her though. She kept on saying "akit" (sakit) and "ichi" (itchy).

Before I forget, I saw Aggie and her family! We were about to go inside the elevator when I saw a familiar looking guy. At first, I thought he looked a lot like Aggie's husband. But when I saw the little girl he was carrying, I knew right then that it was them. Martha is such a cutie and so behaved. Matthew was walking in front of his sister and dad while Aggie was in front of them, walking really fast as if leading the troop. It was really cool seeing them in person when I only get to read about them and see their photos online.

From the hospital, we went to Tondo to visit Sherwin's Lola Imang. She didn't have a husband and children of her own because she was so busy taking care of everybody. She took care of her brothers and sisters, nieces and nephews (Sherwin's dad) and their kids (Sherwin and cousins). We were told she doesn't want to eat and just wanted to lie down. When she saw us however, she stood up and sat with us on the dining table. I could say she was very happy to see us. She loves her apos very much that she cries whenever she sees them. Her mind and body are not as strong as it used to be. She thinks she’s in Tarlac instead of Manila. I could see that Sherwin was a bit sad the remaining afternoon even when he tries to crack jokes about her Lola Imang's hidden treasure. It's really sad seeing your elders get weaker everyday. These are the times when they shouldn't be left alone. That's one good thing about us Filipinos, we always take care of our elders. When the time comes, I hope I could be there for my parents as well.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

One less item from my to-do list

My new portfolio is up! I applied the current web 2.0 style just to prove to myself that I can do it. There are no requirements for web 2.0 but you could easily recognize them. Examples are 3d gradients, transparent or mac-looking buttons, big font size, reflective and shiny surfaces, and lots of white spaces. I know they all tend to look the same but what the heck! It's so clean and easy to the eyes.

I'm so used to heavy graphics and heavy table-laden pages that I can do them in my sleep. (See my old portfolio here.) However, tables are a thing of the past and I know I should start keeping up with the younger and better web designers out there. (yiikes!) I've been struggling for months on creating a web site using CSS only. Now, I am so proud to say that my new site is free of tables and passed the W3C validator! In short, I am soooo updated, new, fresh and definitely IN. Finally!

I'm probably not making any sense here. You might not get the point but if you're a web designer (and an oldie), the way you code and present your portfolio is very important if you're trying to impress prospective clients. So to my old designer friends, say goodbye to your < tables > and welcome the < divs >.

Now if only I can keep it up for my future site projects.

Join the Wave

Thanks to for telling me about Bloggerwave. It's a new company offering bloggers paid opportunities writing about advertisers’ products and services. What a great way to earn extra cash doing what you love. The sign up process is quick. All you need is a paypal account and your blog URL. Join now and start earning!

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Get stressed for $$_ an hour

Remember my post about my decision not to accept the second job? Well, I may have spoken too soon. After sending them the email declining the position, they told me that they really like my designs and that I can choose up to how many hours I can work daily. I thought about it a lot and in the end decided to try it out. The schedule is just four hours a day so I can still have enough time to work on my other job.

I have written almost 600 words explaining why I didn't like this new job. However, I've decided not to blog about it anymore because some people might get offended. OR, the person who interviewed me might stumble upon my blog and I don't want to cause any problems. I'm very thankful for the opportunity given to me but it just won't work.

So, there's the story. I tried, very hard. I just had to quit. For my little girl. For my sanity.

What's the point of this post? Always follow your instincts. If you think something isn't quite right the first time, it probably is. And you know what? When I sent the resignation letter, I've never felt so alive and free.

Managing your leads

My boss used to tell me that no more how cool your products/services are, you won't have a successful company unless you have a strong sales strategy. You need to come up with effective marketing campaigns to be able to generate good leads. Lead generation is the first step towards an actual sale. That's why it's very important to study your leads so you can identify which campaign or advertisement is working for you.

AIMpromote is offering Software-as-a-Service, a Lead Management software that allows you to take total control over your sales process. Having total control means you can track which campaign generated a certain lead letting you know which strategy is most effective. This software gives you the most feature-rich lead management solution. Some of the features are visitor tracking, campaign performance reports, web analytics and lead attention meter. The lead attention meter gives you an alert on which lead has been neglected thus preventing a lost sale.

They have a pricing comparison chart on their web site so you can see how affordable it is. You can also sign up for a full-featured 14-day free trial. Running the software is very easy. AIMpromote will do all the setup and configuration for free. That way you can focus on studying your leads, making that sale and making your business grow.

I'm back ...

...with new pictures.

Here's the little girl playing outside.

May pa-emote emote pa.

Sandy has been asking for her "siming pool" almost everyday. Since we weren't able to book early and all beach resorts were full, we decided to try Club Manila East. It was Black Saturday so as expected, the place was jam packed. I bet it's nice if we went on a regular weekend. They have 4 clean, big pools and their food is good. Plus, you don't have to travel very far if your little one wanted to swim.

Syempre ako kumuha kaya malabo hehe.

Our little princess loved the kiddie pool but soon found out that adult pools are way better. She wanted to swim on her own, always keeping her body away from mama and papa just so she can pretend that she's floating without our help.

Take back control of your life

Drug addiction is a serious problem anywhere. Family’s break up, crimes spread, financial problems arise and health deteriorates. It's sad to know that kids nowadays think that it's cool if you do drugs. What's more disturbing is that they can easily get it anywhere. Just go to the right club or hang out with the right person and you'll easily have your own share of ecstasy, GHB and Rohypnol to name a few.

It's no mystery why people get addicted. While some wants to forget emotional pain, others do it just to be a part of the in crowd. Regardless of the reason, if you're addicted, you need to get help. You are not only hurting yourself but the people around you.

If you're near Michigan and you know someone who needs addiction treatment, tell him or her to give Stone Hawk Rehabilitation Center a try. At Stone Hawk, they understand what addicts are going through because they went through the same thing. They don't use any kind of drugs or medication to help you with your addiction problem. Clients are considered as students trying to learn how to cope with their issues without the use of drugs. To learn more about them, visit their web site and download the information pack. Help a friend in need and be one of their success stories.